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What resolution do I set PC to for optimised DVD playback?

645 Views 7 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  pcgeek
Hello all.

First, here is my relevant system hardware:

P4 2.66G

Radeon 9700 pro

Realmagic Hollywood Plus

Barco Graphics 1208/2 CRT projector

Computer resolution set to 1024 x 768


Win ME

Power DVD 3.0

Power DVD XP 4

Bundled ATI player

DVD Genie


I started PC DVD with the H+ on a slower system and watched it on TV. This was fine at the time, now I have hung the projector and am attempting to switch over to software decoding and retire the H+.

Any and all software options I have tried yield jaggy diagonal lines (what looks like aliasing), terrible panning in slow moving sequences, judder in faster sequences, and pixellation effects.

I have tried reducing resolution down to 800 x 600, and 640 x 480, then reducing color depth to 16 bit, this has little or no effect. Tried various DVD genie options, force Bob, force Weave, hardware acceleration on/off.

If I had not seen the H+, I would not have known there were issues.When I use the Realmagic card the video quality is a little fuzzier, and I get some blue noise visible only in all black material, but the motion is perfectly smooth, and there are no bobbing and combing artifacts. There is no pixellation, and the video looks like film. No judder either. The H+ card wins hands down, and I know the reverse is supposed to be the case. The only option I have not tried is to force a funky resolution via Powerstrip, such that the video card output is a a multiple of the DVD spec. The H+ is fine with the resolution I'm at.

So, basically, what resolutions do you guys run, and what results are expected with software decoding? Apparently, the H+ card is doing a better job of de-interlacing and scaling up the material than the software players on my system, and my system isn't exactly slow. I have no stuttering problems, there are no data rate problems. These are scaling/ deinterlacing problems.

DVD is native 480 x 720 correct?

Hence I need 2 or three times DVD line rate, or whatever an 8 inch CRT can handle before the scan lines overlap, given a good astigmatism and convergence setup?

Please help!

Thanks in advance,

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The best is always your display's native rez. CRTs are usually 1024x768p, correct?
Generally speaking, most playback at the highest rez their display can support, and to be really anal about it :D , the highest rez the display can support while maintaining a multiple of native DVD resolution, 720x480 (if possible). For example, many HDTV users like 1800x960i. 1920 seems to scale the 6.75MHz circle in the anamorphic resolution test pattern in AVIA well, so I prefer 1920x960i.
Out of curiousity, why are you running Win ME? I mean, its without a doubt, the worst Windows ever released.
I don't agree with that statement. I used WinMe for 1.5 years of college, and I preferred it to 9x b/c it had some of the user convenience features of XP on the 98x platform and crashed a lot less than 98 on my system. I did a reformat one time to try out 98x and it ran a LOT slower on my config. Got WinXP and it crashes even less, so microsoft's ok with me.
desktop color has nothing to do with the DVD output, coz video on windows is using video overly which is independent from the desktop color settings
As Karnis said, it's all about the resolving power of your projector. CRT's don't have a 'native resolution' like fixed panel displays, but they do have a 'sweet spot'. I don't know about your Barco, but for my NEC (7-1/2 inch tubes) it's about 720p (720x1280). You might try posting a 'Sweet spot for Barco 1208?' over in the CRT section.

I'm no tquite clear on how you are scaling the output ... you're not using Powerstrip?
You may also want to try a better software player. TheaterTek, NvDVD, and zoom player with WinDVD filters all get high marks (and have trials of one kind or another). ATI's player uses the PowerDVD engine if I remember correctly and it's not supposed to be all that great.

For the CRT you're looking at you really want to go with a 1280x720 or 1440x720 (assuming 16x9 setup) at a minimum and considering how much horsepower you have you should probably look at ffdshow filtering as well.

WinME may also be the source of some stuttering because it tends not to multitask too well. Make sure nothing else is running and that you have the latest drivers for everything. All else fails, XP is a much better choice and if you still have stuttering, take a look at reclock.

As far as scaling artifacts go it's probably a combination of the player and not going to an evenish multiple (though this is pretty hotly debated).
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